RE:ANTI-SMUGGLING FUNCTIONS OF THE FEDERAL OPERATIONS UNIT: MATTER ARISING

December 23, 2015

The Comptroller-General
Nigeria Customs Service
Customs Headquarters
Wuse Zone 3
Abuja.

Dear Sir,

RE:ANTI-SMUGGLING FUNCTIONS OF THE FEDERAL OPERATIONS UNIT: MATTER ARISING

We wish to use this medium to direct your attention to the goings- on at
the Federal Operations Units nationwide which we may consider as
inappropriate on the part of your Government especially the way traded
goods are being seized over minor trade disputes that can be resolved in
favour of trade and revenue collection.

We sincerely and honestly advise that you take a second look at some of
your policies, and possibly reverse some of them in view of the
incalculable damage to trade and revenue due to the Government at the
moment. The extant import regulations guidelines of 2006 had weakened
section 46/47 and untrue declarations in general of CEMA in favour of
traded goods imported into Nigeria.

It is our considered opinion that to encourage FOUs to be seizing trade
goods due to the inherent corruption activities of most officers of the
examination department and failure to perform proper Customs examination
at the ports and border stations is most regrettable and unfortunate. It
is a known fact that the NCS has a platform for Customs examination in
every Customs port and border stations. The feelings among stakeholders
is that if your administration is to be put on a scale of measurement in
the past five months of the Presidential mandate to reform, restructure
and enhance revenue collection, you may have scored low mark in the core
areas of carrying out proper Customs examination and revenue functions.

Our advice is that you order your officers to stop seizing traded goods
over minor trade disputes. The NCS management must learn to punish
officers who compromise Customs examination and Government revenue. In
this regard, we advice that you direct the CACs of the FOUs to forward the
names of officers who compromised Government interest since you assumed
the leadership of Customs via improper Customs examination etc,.

As someone who loves Mr. President and a patriot which informed your
appointment as the CGC at this critical period, you will appreciate the
fact that Mr. President needs a lot of money to prosecute his programmes
and give vent to the “change” mantra. It is not ideal at this time to
seize traded goods in favour of auction sales at this critical economic
down turn. Oil which is the number one revenue earner for the
Government, now sells at $32 per barrel in the international market. This
means there is no better time than now to diversify the economy and to tap
fully all the other areas where Government can generate revenue.

It is important we equally call your attention to the social implication
of seizure of traded goods considering the state of the nation’s security
and crime rate. Every Nigerian owes it a duty to shun actions capable of
precipitating crises that will distract the attention of Mr. President or
threaten the peace of our country. Meanwhile you may wish to direct DCG
T&T/Enforcement and the zonal ACGs to go and talk to the Customs examiners
once again using persuasion and punishment than threats. We encourage you
to direct FOUs to reverse themselves and issue demand notes and impose
penalty of 25% of CIF value of all traded goods seized or being detained.
This will generate more revenue for the Government and help to facilitate
social order and economic development. Government needs money now more
than ever.

We shall in due course address you on matters of blocking of passwords of
officers and corruption therein by some of the ASYCUDA Project Managers,
as well as the inherent revenue risks of the licensing regulation of
Customs using corporate bodies as the licensees. More importantly, we
wish to advise you to go into strategic partnership with CRFFN soonest,
for easy and quick realization of your mandate in the area of revenue
functions and anti smuggling operations.

FWDR. INCREASE UCHE
National Chairman Anti-Corruption & Transparency Unit
NAGAFF Headquarters

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *